Question about web sites that require usernames and passwords...

Paul Neff, Internet Librarian PAUL at KCPL.LIB.MO.US
Thu Nov 30 14:45:37 EST 1995

On the technical side of this issue, I've been struggling with the problem of
hiding usernames and passwords from users who are trying to connect to a
database through a telnet or rlogin URL and haven't had much luck.  Several
variant URL forms which will purportedly accomplish an automatic login were
tried, but in all cases they 1) didn't work and 2) didn't keep the username and
password secure.  Moreover, a lot of telnet servers won't accept passwords as
command line arguments; they have to be entered once the connection is
established (that is, lynx or any other Web browser will generally not be able
to pass them to telnet as arguments or environmental variables).  One solution
might be to write a script in Kermit that would function as a macro for the
process, then invoke the script from lynx as a local executable (which lynx can
be configured to do).

Paul Neff
Internet Librarian, Kansas City Public Library
paul at

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